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From the Publisher"Robert Martin has thrown a brilliant spotlight on the field of press liberty and lit up vast areas of democratic theory and practice once obscured. Looking at the century and a half leading up to the American Revolutionary era, he reminds us how decisively it shaped the vast domain of modern liberty."
-Joyce Appleby,author of Inheriting the Revolution: the First Generation of Americans
"Martin uses a number of fresh quotations and a helpful arranging and packaging of many ideas on a momentous topic."
-American Historical Review
"Robert W. T. Martin revitalizes a debate over the status of press rights in eighteenth-century America that had grown tiresome over the past 20 years...all scholars of American political thought and constitutional development should read this book."
-American Political Science Review
"The Free and Open Press ought to be required reading whenever anyone questions the meaning of the Founding Fathers, the framers of the Constitution, or other early American icons of liberty."
"Robert Martin's The Free and Open Press is conceptual history at its most illuminating. Recognizing that human beings live via ideas that can seem to work together in one context and to be in contradiction in others, Martin shows that many early Americans believed in both a press that would help republican government work and one in which all views could be heard. The lesson they learned—that those goals were often in profound tension—is, soberingly, one that remains true today. If that tension is to be eased, the answers must be found not only in the quantity of our rights but in the quality of our citizens."
-Rogers M. Smith,Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Political Science, University of Pennsylvania